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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I am starting a 380 EXC project very soon, just need to organize to pick up the bike (about a 24hr drive one way, so a bit of a mission!)

Anyway I have been looking up info and found a post here on SMJ where someone said that the stock forks on the earlier 380 was fairly flexy when used on the road/converted to SM. I have the 1998 model, all stock as far as I know so I am just wanting a bit more input on those stock forks if anyone can add some more info there?

I am going to be setting it up for road and kart track use (maybe even full road race track depending on what gearing I can get away with and what top speed I can get out of it...). As a bit of background - I have an XR400 motard and I would say the forks are completely fine on that (for what it is). I notice that they do initially dive through the stroke very fast, but I only ride it on the road so it's not a big issue for me, I just trail brake to get the front end settled then turn in and I've never had a problem with the forks at all. I'm not sure if forks like that would become a more serious issue on track, maybe someone here has been in that situation? I just mention about the XR400 forks as a point of comparison to those on the 380.

I would just buy a set of SM wheels and put them on the 380 and see how I like it, but if I do decide to go with newer forks, say 48mm it will mean a different axle size which is just more messing about as I would need another front wheel. (I believe I would need to go from a 17mm axle to a 26mm axle?)

Cheers for any info on those forks!

Another random question - about vinyls/graphics. I am thinking about making some custom graphics, I used to work in the print industry so I can get vinyls printed up no worries and probably at mates rates. I was just wondering if there's any special type of adhesive needed, or rather any type to avoid? I don't know if certain types would make the plastic brittle etc.? I am thinking that regular vinyl would be okay, but I've never applied it to plastic/unpainted bodywork so I thought I'd check.

On the subject of the kick starter - I read that the 1998 model kick starter is prone to braking? Is that a big issue or did I just end up reading about someone who got unlucky?

I am still doing research and reading up on the 380, but if anyone can offer some other tips that would be great!

Cheers :thumbup:
 

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380 exc

Those forks are 50mm conventionals, investing in later forks would be a good idea I would recommend a whole front end. Finding wheels and brakes would be easier. Watch the off set with the triples,could lead to problems with the chamber if its a smaller and the wheel is moved back. The SXS have better internals or SM secific, don't know what year i'll say, the later the better. As a motard it would be a good improvement.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Oldie 30 for that info. Will keep the triples offset/wheel clearance issue in mind. I'll also keep a look out for a SXS front end... sounds like that should be a nice future upgrade. :thumbup:

On the subject of vinyls adhesive - I don't think I will worry about that now. Someone else recommended Plastidip to me, and I saw a photo of a bike done in flat black. Looked pretty good, seems like a good option!
 

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380

Plasi dipping is not for me, those 50mm are consider to be one of the better forks for trail riding but a revalve would be a waste of money, they just flex to much on a motard. I would look at a port job after the front end, 380's are a pain to jet because of the porting they have standard. Find someone who knows a bit about them I've only read it in articles. Don't change the porting for more power, there a nice reliable engine that will do well on a kart track.
 

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:hmmm: I may know someone who has a set of forks and tripple clamps from an '04 625 SMC. Probably the front wheel to boot? I have no idea of the fitment or the geometry involved, but if your interested PM me.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just wondering... Oldie did you mean SX or SXS forks? I have been looking and cannot find any info or SXS spares. I have found a set of newer 48mm SX forks on eBay though...

In any case I am just going to get this build down to the lowest budget possible, just get the bike riding and then I will think about any fork upgrades later on.

Cheers tdreyer, but I know that for my budget it's not really an option at the moment. Plus the overseas shipping! (I'm in Australia :p ) I am just searching for info at the moment, not actually going to be making any front end swaps for a little while yet...
 

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Sorry sx, the,problem is that all motard wheels for KTM are from 2000 onwards, your triples will not fit any of the later stuff, you will need triples as well, I dont know about brake differences for the later years ie caliper width, I would amagine your first purchase would have to be forks and triples
 

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380

Look for parts for sale on the west coast, California, LA, shipping will be half the cost of shipping from the east coast.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for that info. Good tip on looking for parts on the US west coast!

And yep I guessed that I would need triples as well for any fork swap. Would most likely go for a complete front end (forks, triples, axle) when I do that to keep things simple.

As for the motard wheels... It's actually looking like I will just convert something like a set of CBR400 wheels. Yes, may require some machining and no doubt will require spacers - but I'm not worried about that.

Anyway - I will post up an actual build thread once I get this stuff underway!
 

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A Crf450r front end is a simple swap and the showas are alot better than most WP stuff. Untill you get to the 08+ Closed chamber WP forks then theyre about the same. But the complete Crf front end can be had for around 400 bucks +/-. I did the swap on my 2000 300exc and absolutely love it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks Kaw-Boy, I will keep that in mind!

What year model did your front end come from? Is anything from about 2002 onwards going to be good? (I'm just guessing at years here.)

There is an '07 CRF 250 fork & triples on eBay now, $450. This is good info to know, I will keep an eye out for something like this locally!
 

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Yea. any year crf will work up untill 08 or 09 i think. Mine are off a 07 Crf450r. Do some searching on thumpertalk about the swap and youll find all kind of info. Ill see if i can dig up the link for ya. If you use Crf front wheel and brakes Its pretty much a bolt on swap. Have to make a 5mm spacer to make up for the crf stem being longer and thats it. I think i gave about 450 for my front end.
 
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